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There is a Fortune in the Follow Up

by Marty Foley

Internet marketers often run into a unique challenge on their way to "leaving the rat race" for their own successful cyber-businesses.

Once their online business machines are running fairly smoothly, generating a healthy flow of leads generally isn't a problem. The challenge lies in generating the most profit from the existing flow of leads.

What's one crucial key to generating maximum profit per lead? Yes, there is a fortune in follow up contact.

Why Follow Up Sometimes Gets Neglected

The typical marketer may send one follow up email, mail out a single brochure or catalog, make one follow up call, or send out one fax, and then sit back and wait... Wait for the prospect to visit their web site, place an order, email with further questions, or take another desired action. Even seasoned marketers that are keenly aware of the value of follow up sometimes neglect this crucial activity.

Offline follow up, of course, is more time-consuming and expensive than online follow up, considering the time and expense involved in long distance phone and fax calls, mailing or shipping of marketing materials, and so forth.

Due to its speed and extremely low cost, email could be considered the ideal follow up marketing tool. However, without an efficient system for implementing email follow up, problems can still arise.

Why the Need for Follow Up?

It's a fact that most people typically don't buy (or take other desired action) as a result of an initial marketing contact, even if they are perfectly targeted, prime candidates for the offer.

What's more, it's not unusual for some follow up marketing contacts to generate approximately the same percentage of sales or other desired action as the initial contact.

There are a variety of things that can prevent prospects from taking desired action as a result of initial marketing contact. For instance, they may....

  • have forgotten about your offer;

  • simply be procrastinating for one reason or another;

  • have misplaced your offer, or in the case of email, accidently deleted it;

  • be swamped with so many other things to do that they haven't yet found enough time to act;

  • be distracted by information overload or other things in their very busy lives that they missed your first contact entirely;

  • not yet have enough information to decide what to do about your offer;

  • not have enough money to buy at this time;

  • haven't yet developed enough trust in you;

  • or any number of other reasons.
You've probably heard the following cliche before, but it's worth repeating: "Marketing is a numbers game." The greater number of contacts you have with a prospect, the greater chance they will finally act on your offer.

Different prospects will, of course, be at various stages of the sales process. Some may be just one follow up contact away from acting on you offer; other prospects may require several more contacts before they finally act. The question is, will you persist at follow up long enough to motivate your real prospects to act on your offer?

Follow up may seem like a mundane activity, but if you want maximum sales (online or off), you should seriously consider implementing a systematic follow up system. Otherwise, you're probably wasting a significant percentage of resources you invest to acquire your leads, and are overlooking a gold mine!

Marty's Resource Box

I've come across a powerful desktop application for automating email follow up, called Postmaster. It either works along with Microsoft Access (which you may already have), or comes with its own stand-alone database. It has an excellent personalization feature, automatic scheduling, and much more. Check it out at: http://profitinfo.com/success/followup.htm

Tags: Sales and Marketing



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